Skip to comments.Black forum targets health as top priority; 'Blueprint' for progress proposed
Posted on 02/27/2005 3:01:57 PM PST by mhking
Taking more personal responsibility for individual health and the well-being of the African-American community emerged as a lead strategy Saturday at the sixth annual "State of the Black Union" symposium.
Presented by PBS television talk show host Tavis Smiley, the all-day forum focused on how to improve health among blacks and how to create a national "African-American contract" to address political, economic, health and other concerns.
"It would be a document, a blueprint for carrying our community forward," Smiley explained to about 6,000 people who attended the free event at New Birth Missionary Baptist Church in Lithonia.
The contract would be presented to politicians, Smiley said, "so that the next time you come looking for our vote, you come correct on this contract or you don't come at all."
The idea grew out of the large rift among African-Americans created during the 2004 Presidential election over issues such as gay marriage, said Smiley.
Princeton professor Cornel West, Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan, the Rev. Al Sharpton, political strategist Donna Brazile, civil rights leader the Rev. Joseph Lowery and Dr. Joycelyn Elders, former U.S. surgeon general, were among the high-profile panelists.
Arranged in a casual living room conversation grouping with a dozen overstuffed armchairs on stage, the panelists repeatedly drew cheers and standing ovations of applause with passionate responses to Smiley's questions.
One chair was left empty in recognition of the late civil rights activist Ossie Davis, who had been scheduled to appear.
Depending on who held the microphone, the forum's conversation sounded like a political rally or a Sunday church service with references ranging from Malcom X to Moses.
During the discussion over the creation of a contract to present to political parties, Farrakhan launched into a 15-minute sermon on why the contract should be among African-Americans so they'll be more committed to solving problems communitywide.
"We can no longer rely on a benevolent white person in office to look out for our needs," the Nation of Islam spiritual leader said. "That responsibility is ours."
Also tuning in was a live C-SPAN audience.
Smiley focuses annually on various challenges facing the black community, including issues of family, church and education.
The talk show host, who recently took control of his own health losing 75 pounds, training for marathons and eating better will be taking the "Road to Health" discussions to other cities.
Saturday's event was sponsored by Kaiser Permanente, McDonald's, ExxonMobil, "The Tom Joyner Morning Show" and Atlanta's Kiss 104.1 WALR-FM radio.
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I contrast this with Newt Gingrich's AEI forum where he talked about diabetes being the #1 medical issue facing the United States, and calling for more nutrition education and medical spending accounts...
The first paragraph almost makes the "overstuffed armchairs" statement redundant. Where was Jesse?
I definately noticed. It was the State of the Liberal Black Union but consider some of the speakers... Louis Farrakhan (murderer of Malcolm X imho), Jocelyn Elders, Jesse Jackson...Tavis Smiley was a smug ass and basically threw down a gauntlet to anyone black who dares to question democratic,liberal principles. Agree or be cast out of the 'black community' with that whole come correct or don't come at all crap. No one askes themselves why after liberals got involved in the civil rights movement did the lives of black people take such a pitiful turn.
He was there.
You know the most dangerous place in the world to be is between Jesse Jackson and a television camera...
Imagine Jesse Jackson and Chuck Schumer and only one camera.
When Black liberals talk about personal responsibility, it is like the old line about a dog walking on its hind legs: one is not surprised to see that it done poorly, but that it is done at all.
I stomached a few hours of this on CSPAN. It was tough.
He was there.
Jesse and Chuck on the same stage, but multiple cameras.
Imagine so many black liberals they had to shoo the first group off stage to bring on more.
Strange, my fiancee's bankrupcy was caused by catastrophic credit card bills and a 300lb. ex that stole her money for beer and parties... and she still voted for John Kerry.
Stronger man than I...
I watched much of this on C-span yesterday. Interesting how farrahkan kept alluding to himself as a Baptist preacher who seemed pretty much to be for a segregated society. None of the speakers seemed to be willing to call themselves Americans without the usual hyphenation, but want their own little niche in American society.
So, they'll give their "contract" to the dems who'll tell them, "Wonderful, we'll look at it later," and invite Jesse to speak at the convention. The good guys will say, "Sure, but what have you done that would make us put some of YOUR items ahead of OUR items?"
The blacks will do what their pimp masters tell them in 2008 and vote 90% for whatever skank candidate the dems trot out.
Smiley's effort was like the members of a local union preparimg a list of negotiating positions. The union officers are going to do what they want. And, all you get is gimmees.
Why is it, apparently, a black issue separate from the rest of the population?
Asians, Hispanics, American Indians Whites etc don't get ill?
I watched alot of it. It was a disgusting thinly veiled display of anti-white racism, paranoia and conspiracy theories. In short all of the problems of blacks result from whites. Blacks were told to avoid white doctors, white medicine, white foods, white education and white hospitals. The US is a racist society, hospitals don't cure people because they make money off the sick, blacks get aids because whites don't educate them properly, etc. These people are seriously delusional and forums like the one broadcast yesterday do nothing but promote black hatred of whites and make blacks look like lunatics. McDonalds, Kaiser Permanente, and CSPAN should be ashamed of being involved in this.
It isn't. It's a smoke screen that the black liberal elite (which this was a meeting of in all reality) is glomming onto in order to maintain credibility (or at least what's left of it).
Add Cox Radio & Cox Broadcasting to that list -- they own WALR-FM Atlanta, who also was a sponsor of this "thing."
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